Charles County, MD
 
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A. 
The Deputy County Administrator of Planning and Growth Management, the Deputy County Administrator's successor or a person duly authorized by the County Administrator shall be the Zoning Officer.
B. 
The Zoning Officer, or a duly authorized designee, shall have primary responsibility for the administration and enforcement of this chapter.
C. 
The Zoning Officer shall have the authority to:
(1) 
Receive, review, analyze and make recommendations on all applications filed under the provisions of this chapter for transmittal to the Planning Commission or Board of Appeals.
(2) 
Approve site plans required to be submitted pursuant to this chapter.
(3) 
Issue permits pursuant to the provisions of this chapter, issue stop-work orders or revoke any permit upon violation of any of the provisions of this chapter or any approvals granted based on the requirements of this chapter.
(4) 
Conduct inspections and surveys to determine whether a violation of this chapter exists.
(5) 
Seek criminal or civil enforcement for any provision of this chapter and take any action on behalf of the County, either at law or in equity, to prevent or abate any violation or potential violation of this chapter.
(6) 
Render interpretations, upon written request of an interested person whose property may be affected, as to the applicability of the chapter to particular uses and its application to the factual circumstances presented.
(7) 
Design and distribute applications, forms and notices required by this chapter, requesting information which is pertinent to the requested approval.
(8) 
Perform such duties as are necessary for the proper enforcement and administration of this chapter.
The Zoning Officer has the power to issue the following permits:
A. 
Zoning permits. No building or other structure shall be erected, nor shall any existing building or structure be moved, added to, enlarged or structurally altered and no excavation for any building or other structure shall begin until a zoning permit certifying compliance with these regulations has been issued.
B. 
Use and occupancy permits. No building, other structure or land shall be used, nor shall any building, structure or land be converted, wholly or in part, to any other use, except for agricultural uses permitted by right under the provisions of this chapter, until a use occupancy permit, certifying compliance with these regulations, has been issued.
C. 
Sign permits. No permanent, freestanding or building signs may be erected without first obtaining a sign permit in accordance with Article XIX.
D. 
Demolition permits. No building or other structures shall be razed, demolished or removed, either entirely or in part, nor shall any of said activities be commenced, without a demolition permit.
E. 
Approval by the Board of Appeals shall not constitute approval of a permit as required in Subsections A, B and C.
F. 
Other permits. Additional permits may be required to enforce the provisions of this chapter.
A. 
The Zoning Officer will accept applications for any of the permits listed above only from the owner of the subject property, an authorized representative of the owner or a contract purchaser.
B. 
The Zoning Officer may require an applicant to submit proof of ownership, authority from the owner or contractual relationship with the owner.
C. 
When required under the provisions or requirements of this chapter, a major or minor site plan, in compliance with Appendix A,[1] shall be submitted to the Zoning Officer along with the application for a zoning permit.
[1]
Editor's Note: Appendix A is included as an attachment to this chapter.
A. 
The Zoning Officer will only consider fully completed applications for the permits listed in § 297-430.
B. 
The Zoning Officer will deem an application to be complete when it contains all of the information that is necessary to decide whether or not the development, if completed as proposed, will comply with all of the requirements of this chapter.
C. 
All applications to be approved by the Zoning Officer shall include the information set forth in Appendix A[1] of this chapter for the particular type of approval requested.
[1]
Editor's Note: Appendix A is included as an attachment to this chapter.
D. 
The Zoning Officer shall develop application forms, instructional sheets, manuals, checklists or other techniques or devices to assist applicants in understanding the application requirements and the form(s) and type of information that must be submitted.
A. 
The Zoning Officer will issue any permit authorized by this chapter only when a review of the application submitted, including a site plan and any other plan required, indicates that the development will comply with the provisions of this chapter and any approval granted by the Board of Appeals, Planning Commission and/or County Commissioners. Any plans and applications finally approved are incorporated into any permit issued, and all development shall occur strictly in accordance with such approved plans and applications.
B. 
A permit is issued when a copy of the fully executed permit is delivered to the permit recipient, and delivery is accomplished when the permit is hand-delivered or mailed to the permit applicant.
All permits issued by the Zoning Officer, based on plans or applications approved by the County Commissioners, Planning Commissioner and/or Board of Appeals, are deemed to authorize any such approved uses, arrangements, construction or other matter allowed by this chapter. Any use, arrangement, construction or other matter which deviates from that authorized by the permit is a violation of this chapter.
A. 
The construction standards for all off-site and on-site improvements required by this chapter shall conform to all applicable County design and construction standards. Appropriate County agencies will approve the plans and specifications for all required improvements and shall inspect the construction of such improvements to ensure conformity.
B. 
Inspection during the installation of the on- and off-site improvements shall be made by the Zoning Officer in order to certify compliance with the approved site plan and applicable standards.
C. 
Upon satisfactory completion of the required improvements, and after having received verification by the appropriate County agencies, the Zoning Officer shall recommend to the County Commissioners the release of any bond which may have been furnished for the guaranty of satisfactory installation of such improvements or parts thereof. This release shall provide for 10% of the total bond to be retained for a period of 12 months after completion of all work. Said retainer shall be for the protection of the County to remedy failures, discrepancies or other defects in the previously approved improvements.
D. 
The installation of such improvements shall in no case serve to bind or obligate the County to accept responsibility for the maintenance, repair or operation of such improvement in any way unless the County determines that such on-site or off-site improvement, after completion, will be dedicated to the County. In such case, a maintenance agreement may be required by the County.